16. Oktober 2017 · Kommentare deaktiviert für „Reflections on European Attitudes Towards the Flow of Migrants From Libya: Time to Shift Gears“ · Kategorien: EU, Libyen · Tags: , ,

The Libya Observer | 16.10.2017

By Fatimah Elfeitori, co-founder of RAR Refugees Malaysia (NGO)

With terrorism and immigration being portrayed as two sides of the same coin, the refugee crisis has been dealt with as a threat to national security rather than a humanitarian issue. This is reflected in the latest immigration policies and measures adopted by the European nations targeting the central Mediterranean route. The hypothesis presented has been that terrorism is imported by immigrants and thus the war on terrorism necessitates curbing immigration. An alarming contradiction however comes to light when the deals with the Libyan coastguard are examined closely.

The sea crossing from Libya has been one of the two main routes in the flow of immigrants to Europe, the other being by sea from Turkey to Greece. The recent EU-Ankara deal to send refugees caught at sea back to Turkey seems at the face of it to have been largely successful in managing the flow of refugees from the eastern Mediterranean route. However this cap has been described as “putting a finger on a stream”, as it in fact led to the increase of influx through the Libyan and Moroccan routes making the need for solutions there even more dire. A recent study by the International Organization for Migration (IOM) explains that “While overall numbers of migrants attempting to cross the Mediterranean by the eastern route were reduced significantly in 2016 by the EU-Turkey deal, death rates have increased to 2.1 per 100 in 2017, relative to 1.2 in 2016”. The crisis has prompted EU leaders to study several plans ranging from development programs and enhanced visa processes in origin countries to deals with the Libyan coast guard to prevent boats from crossing to Europe.

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13. Oktober 2017 · Kommentare deaktiviert für „La strategia italiana per fermare i migranti in Libia è in crisi?“ · Kategorien: Italien, Libyen · Tags: ,

Die Kämpfe in der libyschen Küstenstadt Sabrata sind abgeflaut. Sie wurden ausgelöst durch den Deal, den die italienische Regierung mit dem Dabashi-Clan geschlossen hat, um Migrant*innen an der Fahrt über das Mittelmeer zu hindern. Die Dabashi-Milizen sind inzwischen aus Sabrata abgezogen, die ‚Operation Room fighting IS‘ scheint die Kontrolle über die Stadt zu haben. Die italienische Strategie zur Abwehr der Flüchtlinge steckt in der Krise. Dennoch sind diese die Leidtragenden. Sie sind eingesperrt in Lagern ohne Zugang zu Lebensmitteln und Wasser. Hunderte sind inzwischen zu Fuß geflohen und haben Zuwara erreicht.

Internazionale | 12.10.2017

Annalisa Camilli, giornalista di Internazionale

“Ci sono rifugiati eritrei imprigionati nei centri di detenzione di Sabrata, senza accesso ad acqua, cibo e cure mediche da almeno cinque giorni”, denuncia l’attivista eritrea Meron Estefanos, che è in contatto telefonico con un’ottantina di persone, rimaste bloccate per settimane nei combattimenti tra gruppi armati rivali a Sabrata, nel nordovest della Libia. “Ci sono sei donne che hanno partorito senza assistenza medica e almeno cinquanta bambini rinchiusi in questi centri di raccolta. Non c’è niente da mangiare”, racconta a Internazionale. Estefanos vive da anni in Svezia, ma è un punto di riferimento per gli eritrei che fuggono da Asmara, attraverso il Sudan e la Libia.

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13. Oktober 2017 · Kommentare deaktiviert für „Europas Hilfspolizisten“ · Kategorien: Italien, Libyen · Tags: ,

German Foreign Policy | 13.10.2017

Die EU-Flüchtlingsabwehr in Libyen verzeichnet einen krachenden Rückschlag und ruft beim Menschenrechtskommissar des Europarats scharfe Kritik hervor. Der Versuch Italiens, einen Warlord in der Küstenstadt Sabratha im Westen von Tripolis zu bestechen, um seine Milizen als eine Art Hilfspolizei gegen Migranten einzusetzen, hat zu dreiwöchigen erbitterten Kämpfen mit zahlreichen Todesopfern geführt. Der Clan des Warlords, der im Sommer nach übereinstimmenden Berichten mit finanziellen Zuwendungen aus Rom bedacht wurde, ist in der Vergangenheit durch seine Nähe zum IS aufgefallen; ein Clanmitglied fungierte als örtlicher IS-Anführer. Zudem stößt die italienische Marinemission zur Unterstützung der sogenannten libyschen Küstenwache zunehmend auf Protest. Wer zur Auslieferung von Migranten an libysche Stellen beitrage, verstoße gegen die „Pflicht, deren Menschenrechte zu schützen“, erklärt der Menschenrechtskommissar des Europarats, Nils Muižniek. Die Vorwürfe treffen auch Berlin, das bei der Abwehr von Flüchtlingen eng mit Rom kooperiert und nicht zuletzt an der Schulung der libyschen Küstenwache selbst beteiligt ist.

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08. Oktober 2017 · Kommentare deaktiviert für „Armed faction takes over protection of Libyan oil and gas complex, fresh concern over migrants“ · Kategorien: Libyen · Tags: , ,

Reuters | 07.10.2017

Ahmed Elumami

SABRATHA, Libya (Reuters) – An armed alliance involved in a three-week battle over the Libyan smuggling hub of Sabratha said on Saturday it had taken over protection of the Mellitah oil and gas terminal after expelling a rival group.

An organization called the Operations Room and its allies have been fighting the Anas al-Dabbashi brigade, a major facilitator of migrant smuggling that recently said it had changed tack and struck a deal with the U.N.-backed government in Tripoli to stop boats setting off across the Mediterranean.

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06. Oktober 2017 · Kommentare deaktiviert für „Armed force claims victory in Libyan migrant smuggling hub“ · Kategorien: Libyen · Tags:

Reuters | 06.10.2017

Ahmed Elumami, Aidan Lewis

An armed alliance involved in a three-week battle over the Libyan smuggling hub of Sabratha said it had taken control of the coastal city on Friday.

A group called the Operations Room and its allies have been fighting the Anas al-Dabbashi brigade, a major facilitator of migrant smuggling that recently said it had changed tack and struck a deal with the U.N.-backed government in Tripoli to stop boats setting off across the Mediterranean.

“Sabratha city has been liberated from the militias — the Dabbashi militias and their alliance,” said Operations Room spokesman Saleh Graisia. “Now the city is fully controlled by the Operations Room … the militias have escaped to the west.”

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06. Oktober 2017 · Kommentare deaktiviert für „Italian effort to stop migrants fuels bloody battle in Libya“ · Kategorien: Italien, Libyen · Tags: ,

Washington Post | 05.10.2017

By Maggie Michael | AP

It began when a Libyan militia paid by Italy to stop migrants heading to Europe intercepted a group of human traffickers offshore. That confrontation has spiraled into a weeks-long battle among rival militias for control of a Libyan coastal city that has left dozens dead.

The bloodshed in the city of Sabratha is in part an unexpected consequence of Europe’s effort to stem the flow of migrants from Libya across the Mediterranean. It illustrates how easily things can escalate out of control in the chaos of the North African country, where three different governments claim authority and the real power in many areas lies with local militias.

The Sabratha fight has expanded, bringing in outside factions, including Khalifa Hifter, the strongman who controls eastern Libya and is a rival of the weak, internationally recognized government based in Tripoli, headed by Fayez Serraj. Hifter appears to be using the conflict to obtain a foothold in the western part of the country.

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03. Oktober 2017 · Kommentare deaktiviert für „Italy’s deal to stem flow of people from Libya in danger of collapse“ · Kategorien: Italien, Libyen · Tags:

The Guardian | 04.10.2017

Number of people crossing Mediterranean rises again amid power struggle between rival factions in Libyan human-trafficking port

A key pillar of the Italian government’s effort to stem the politically toxic issue of people crossing the Mediterranean from Libya to southern Italy is in danger of collapse as a result of a bloody power struggle in the key Libyan port of Sabratha, the epicentre of human trafficking to Italy.

The Italian prime minister, Paolo Gentiloni, had hailed an 80% drop in the number of migrants reaching Italy in July and August, but the number of migrants suddenly started rising again last month as the Sabratha power struggle unfolded, suggesting rival gangs, fighting for control of the profitable business, may not prove reliable partners for the Italians.

The strategy to stem the flow of people from Libya – largely masterminded by the Italian interior minister, Marco Minniti – is seen by the governing Democratic party (PD) as critical to its fortunes in elections next spring.

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28. September 2017 · Kommentare deaktiviert für „Fewer clashes in Sabratha but tension remains high“ · Kategorien: Italien, Libyen · Tags: ,

Libya Herald | 27.09.2017

Clashes continued today in Sabratha, 80 kilometres west of Tripoli, between the Anti-IS Operations Room and the 48th Battalion although the intensity of fighting was much reduced according to an official in the town who asked not to be identified. Occasional firing of both small and heavy weapons could be heard, he said, but no deaths or serious injuries had been reported among either the combatants or the civilian population. The town remained tense, however, he explained.

He claimed that the Operations Room had gained the upper hand so far in the fighting – a claim denied by Ahmed Dabashi, the head of the local Amu brigade which overlaps with the 48th; many members of the former are also members of the latter and thereby receive an official salary. However, this evening there were unconfirmed reports that the operations room had taken Sabratha hospital.

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27. September 2017 · Kommentare deaktiviert für „Rescue ship says Libyan coast guard shot at and boarded it, seeking migrants“ · Kategorien: Italien, Libyen · Tags: , ,

Reuters | 26.09.2017

Steve Scherer

ROME (Reuters) – A Libyan coast guard vessel fired shots and boarded a humanitarian ship in the Mediterranean on Tuesday, demanding that the migrants on board be handed over to them, a spokesman for the Mission Lifeline charity said.

“The Libyan man said: ‘This is our territory,’” said Axel Steier, a spokesman for the German-based charity that performed its first rescues on Tuesday.

“After a while, they fired shots,” he said, probably into the air or sea. No one was wounded.

Afterward two Libyans boarded the Lifeline ship to try to persuade them to hand over some 70 migrants they had just taken off a wooden boat in international waters.

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26. September 2017 · Kommentare deaktiviert für „Sabratha fighting rages on as many townspeople flee“ · Kategorien: Italien, Libyen · Tags: ,

Libya Herald | 25.09.2017

Sabratha hospital has issued an urgent call for trauma kits and blood as the fighting in the town continued for a tenth day, with at least 17 dead and 48 wounded since the violence began.

So pressed is the hospital that casualties are being sent elsewhere. A woman hit by shrapnel today in her kitchen was transferred to Zuwara for treatment

Thus far all mediation attempts by local elders have failed, with two uneasy truces quickly breaking down. The Libya Red Crescent has reportedly evacuated almost all the population from the old part of two where the fighting has become fiercest.

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